Sonia Rodriguez – Metro US

Sonia Rodriguez

Spanish-born ballerina Sonia Rodriguez, a principal dancer with the National Ballet, will be in Vancouver this week for her 15th stint as the Sugar Plum Fairy in the holiday classic The Nutcracker. Metro caught up with the dancer to talk about her love of dance.

Q: So many little girls take ballet lessons. How did you decide you wanted this to be your career?

A: I think it sort of chose me. I started taking ballet when I was five but by the time I was 12 it had become part of who I was. I couldn’t see myself doing anything else.

Q: What kind of training goes into becoming a professional ballerina?

A: It’s a huge commitment. I was probably (training) seven days a week since the age of about twelve. To somebody from the outside it might have looked like a sacrifice, but growing up it was just all I wanted to do so.

Q: What’s your schedule like now?

A: It’s rigorous. A normal day (I) start at 10 a.m. (with) a class. And then you have six hours of rehearsal five (or six) times a week. There’s always that unattainable perfection that you keep aiming for. As long as you feel challenged and inspired … it’s the most wonderful thing.

Q: How is the Nutcracker different from other productions?

It’s a holiday tradition. The Nutcracker is something that people look forward to and it’s part of their memories of their holiday time. That gives you a different feel and energy from the audience. It’s a nice production to be part of.

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